Teachers Hone Remote Learning Technology Skills

For the last few weeks, Santa Maria College teachers have been ensuring they are experts in the use of the technology needed to present remote learning. Head of Digital Learning, Melissa Marshall has been running helpful instructional sessions with staff at lunchtimes and after school.

Melissa has been thrilled at the positive attitude and approach taken by teachers. The growth in skills will be utilised into the future, regardless of whether or not schools close.

Which platforms is the school focusing on?

Our staff and students are already very familiar with the use of SEQTA and One Note. These are the platforms that will be utilised for most course content and lessons. Teachers may also use video software such as Photobooth, which is Apple software that uses your device’s inbuilt camera to create video. It is simple software with maximum impact.

Email will continue to be useful in any remote learning. There is also the option of chat, live questioning and social connection via Teams. All students are being taught the use of this software, as part of the Microsoft 365 suite.

What challenges exist for Santa Maria with remote learning?

Santa Maria is very aware of equity issues in regard to internet access. 86% of people have stable, powerful connection, that’s 6 in 7. There are plenty of ways to ensure those without reliable access aren’t disadvantaged.

Teachers are able to film key informational lessons on Photobooth that students can download at times when they do have internet connection. 

What are the advantages of online learning?

Having instructional videos and activity packages means girls will be able to review content for greater clarity and revision. They will also be able to work at their own pace.

When asked what they would enjoy about online learning, Year 10 girls said:

  • Working at my own pace, like not panicking when the teacher says you only have 10 minutes to do something, I can take the time I need
  • Studying with my dog
  • Getting all my work done in the morning so I can have the whole afternoon free
  • Doing all my maths in one day, English the next then Science, I can really get stuck into things
  • Wearing my pjs while studying

Kids are great!

The circumstances we find ourselves in are strange, however, they offer us enormous opportunity for growth. The ability to powerfully use technology in learning from a distance is one of those opportunities.

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